Stu Ridley is a 25 year old farmer from Northumberland whose life is centered around rugby, farming, family and friends. The youngest of three rugby-playing brothers, he grew up in West Northumberland where he attended Haydon Bridge High School.
Last month, Stu was planning a trip to Thailand with three other Tynedale boys. A few days before he was due to leave, Stu went into Town for a few beers. As the night progressed, he began to feel unwell and left early (which is very unlike him).
After the usual tests in hospital, it was found that he has a brain tumour. The tumour is in a position where doctors are unable to operate. Further tests were done and Stu posted this on his Facebook page on the 19th February:
More bad news I’m afraid folks, the results of the biopsy have shown a particularly aggressive type of tumour which has spread to a couple of other spots as well as a bit on the surface of the brain! I start radio then chemotherapy in the next couple of weeks to try and slow it down however it isn’t curable at the moment and I’ve been given roughly six months but everyone is different and I’m far from beaten yet! Thanks again for all the support that’s been given it’s been unbelievable and really does mean the world to myself and my family! Sorry to drop this on you people but people need to know what’s happening! Hope to see you all soon and take care, much love x
Stu is an exceptional personality and his attitude in the face of a life-threatening illness is testimony to his drive and determination, backed up by a very positive approach to people and life!
Stu has played rugby since his early years at Tynedale RFC, a ‘traditional’ amateur National One (third tier of English rugby) side who mainly face semi-professional clubs the length and breadth of England. Present internationals such as Kieron Brooks (England) and Tim Visser (Scotland), previously played for Tynedale, plus past internationals such as Epi Taione (Tonga). Graduating from the Colts as a scrum-half, Stu played with the club’s third team (Grasshoppers), second team (Raiders) and this season has played First XV rugby at Inside Centre and Wing. His preferred position is 12.
This campaign, ‘Stay Strong Stu‘, aims to jointly raise awareness of Brain Tumours and to empower our communities to help fight such an illness – whilst also providing practical support to Stu.
To donate to the campaign, please visit the Go Fund Me page here: www.gofundme.com/staystrongstu
You can also follow the progress of the campaign and its fundraising efforts by visiting the ‘Stay Strong Stu’ Facebook page, which has over 11,000 fans at the moment – www.facebook.com/staystrongstu